This year, the Boy Scouts of America announced their plans for a new Geocaching Merit Badge. Watch our latest Lost & Found video to see how Boy Scout Troop 75 incorporates geocaching into their program. The scout troop from from Manhattan, Kansas also demonstrates some of the critical thinking and problem solving skills needed to earn the badge.
Requirements for the Geocaching Merit Badge are available online. The official Geocaching Merit Badge patch is in final development and expected to be released in the near future.
Groundspeak is currently hosting a booth at the BSA 2010 National Scout Jamboree in Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia. Scouts there can borrow GPS devices to seek out geocaches hidden in the area during the event, which runs from July 26 – August 4, 2010.
Watch all the Lost & Found stories, which highlight the worldwide adventure of geocaching.
Geocaching.com teams up with The Jim Henson Company, PBS stations, museums, zoos and aquariums across the United States to bring you the Dinosaur Train Geocaching Challenge. The PBS children’s show Dinosaur Train encourages kids to “Go outside, get into nature and make you own discoveries!” Now Dinosaur Train challenges families to find geocaches with fun facts about dinosaurs from the show hidden inside.
Team RAGAR is one of more than 300 geocachers to log a Dinosaur Train geocache so far. They found the Dinosaur Train Cryolophosaurus Cache-WVIZ in Cleveland, Ohio. They logged, “Came to find this one this morning because Catie loves the Dinosaur Train show on PBS… Catie was very excited to trade a pathtag for a dinosaur.”
Geocachers are also encouraged to record their favorite dinosaur. T-Rex seems to be the reigning favorite among the adults.
There are nearly twenty Dinosaur Train geocaches around the U.S. so far, with many more being planned for the near future. Soon you’ll find instructions to make and hide your own Dinosaur Train geocache. You can find the growing list of Dinosaur Train Geocaches here.
Editor’s Note: Kiet and Jill Callies (kietc) along with their daughter visited Groundspeak HQ on June 18th, 2010. It was their 1001st straight day of geocaching. The journey began on September 22, 2007 and ended that day at HQ. Kiet authored this guest blog. This is his story. These are his words. Here’s what you can learn from a team that completed a geocaching streak of 1001 days.
When we started our streak on September 22, 2007, it was a reboot of a previous 41-day streak, broken by work commitments, which just whetted our whistles for the big one. No other commitments would interrupt our next streak until June 18, 2010 – a thousand and one days later. In that time, if stringing our finds together like a necklace of pearls, we traveled nearly 60,000 miles and made finds in 15 states.
The original streak probably began as a pacesetter for reaching a milestone by the year’s end. The big streak was to prove we could go all the way. We started setting the goal of 100 days, then a year and, if a year, why not a thousand days. Then, again, why not be literary, like A Thousand and One Arabian Nights, A Thousand and One Geocaching Days.
I almost carried the whole load alone. However, this was never meant to be a loner’s endeavor. My wife and daughter stepped in my place a couple of times. Once, during one of life’s frustrating moments of defeatism when I decided to give up on everything and pick a fight with the world, my wife, unable to witness the regret I would face in the after-moment, took my daughter and made a find to keep the streak alive.
Now, to maintain such a streak, the quality of some caches suffers. Though we have seen and discovered some amazing things in the course of our adventures, both obvious and hidden, we often had to settle for some mundane finds – a film canister tucked under a lamp post cover or inside a guard rail, which can be demotivating when these are the majority of your finds. Then I stumbled upon the Danboard and Stormtroopers 365 photo projects and was inspired.
One of the things we enjoy about geocaching is the context of location. There is a reason why someone chose a particular location and decided to share it with others. Now you can argue whether the location is worth sharing, but you cannot deny that it now has context, a story. I decided to lay another narrative on top, and my medium was Legos and Star Wars.
Legos are small and portable, perfect for travel, and like in Star Wars, we as geocachers use technology to get us close to the truth, the cache, and then use the mystical, or our geo-senses, to actually find it. Over-thinking it? Probably. I grew up under the strong influence of the original trilogy, and besides that, Star Wars is just so cool. On Day 779, I introduced the Star Wars Lego storyline and have managed a few chuckles here and there.
Now that the streak is over, and I have had time to digest it all, I will tell you that I did experience withdrawal and guilt the next day, June 19th. What’s next? In celebration of geocaching’s 10-year anniversary, to find a cache placed in each month of geocaching’s existence. Isn’t setting goals fun?
“Mingo” GC30 survives at the oldest active cache. This Terrain 1, Difficulty 1 geocache sits right off the interstate in Western Kansas. It was placed on May 11th, 2000. The cache has been logged more the 1,700 times since then. “Mingo” is a must-log for many geocachers and billed as a “quick stop for a long trip.” The Kansas Stasher placed the cache. He writes that it’s the 7th geocache ever placed, and the first in Kansas.
What to explore more geocaching adventures? Take a look at all the Geocaches of the Week here.
Geocaching squares off again the battle of the bulge. Geocacher Martin Pedersen is on a diet. Martin is determined to lose 100 pounds by the end of the year. He’s using geocaching to shed the weight. His aim is to find 1000 geocaches and walk 2500 kilometers. Root him on by posting a comment and sharing your geocaching weight lose stories here on our blog. You can also track his progress and send well wishes his way on his must-read family website, http://familynavigation.com